Don’t think umpires check for front-foot no-balls any more: Ponting

The broadcaster showed that Ishant Sharma had regularly overstepped during his spell, but the on-field umpires had not signalled a no-ball for any of them.

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Ricky Ponting on Sunday called attention to the on-field umpires, saying that they had not been noticing the clear no-balls during the Adelaide Test, which even cost India a wicket.

The former Australian captain’s remarks were in reference to the incident when Ishant Sharma trapped Aaron Finch leg-before but was later found to have overstepped the line on replays.

Ishant was unlucky not to bag a wicket in the very first over of Australia’s chase when he trapped Finch LBW off his second delivery.

Umpire Kumar Dharmasena raised his finger but the Australian opener decided to call for a review which revealed that Ishant had overstepped.

The broadcaster then showed that Ishant had regularly overstepped during his spell, but the on-field umpires had not signalled a no-ball for any of them.

“I’ve said this for a lot of years – I honestly don’t think the umpires look at the front line anymore,” Ponting told.

“Some of the ones we’ve seen today…he was four or six inches over the line.

“I don’t think the umpires are looking and I certainly don’t think they were looking at those ones because they were blatantly obvious ones.

“And as we know now, they’ll only ever look at them if a wicket falls, which as far as I’m concerned is not right.

“Part of umpiring is to get the no-ball decisions right as well. I’m not asking for everything to be spot on, but if you’re six inches over then surely you can call it.”

Ponting also said that the fielding captains should want to know how often their bowlers overstep.

“Part of umpiring is to get the no-ball decisions right as well. I’m not asking for everything to be spot on, but if you’re six inches over then surely you can call it.”

Ponting also said that the Indian camp would be right to feel disappointed with the umpiring, as if they had pointed out Ishant’s no-balls earlier, it would not have cost them a wicket. “If I was the fielding team, I’d want to know,” he said.

“If I was Virat Kohli and I knew that my bowler was bowling a no-ball more often than not, I’d want to know that so I could pull that back in line.”

But the Indians did not have to rue that missed opportunity for long as R Ashwin (2/44), Mohammed Shami (2/15), Jasprit Bumrah and Ishant Sharma tied down the Aussie batsmen with their nagging line, length and movement.

Australia are staring down the barrel in the first Test after being reduced to 104 for 4 in their second innings at stumps on day 4, chasing 323 for victory at the Adelaide Oval.

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